We juxtapose four concepts across the pages of this article: the moral economy as formulated by the English historian Edward Thompson, the risk society popularised by U. Beck, governance, taken from different sources, and finally flexible rigidity, originally formulated by R. Dore. Conjugating these ideas will afford us a reading and interpretation of industrial relations in Europe in the following terms. European integration has been first and foremost the building of a common market. Building this market on a supranational level has bolstered trends towards a risk society whilst the elusive nature of governance in the EU has set a poor groundwork for social regulations able to confront this trend. In order to implement new regulations in this sense, it will be necessary to mobilise and a fight for a new moral economy and a building of Europe that is not a mere formality but rather a playing field for protest
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